englexas englexas

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Debbie Mayes  a boy from texas meets a girl from england... following Jesus and raising 3 kiddos and our new rainbow baby.

the progression of a floor plan...from scrap paper to neatly detailed designs! It's been so fun to dream and plan, it almost feels like we're designing a "real& #34; house but we only have to worry about 300 square feet. Fixtures and lighting comes next, share with me your resources friends!

#40weeksold and just as sweet as she looks! we had an eventful couple of weeks with the big move, her first ER visit, roseola and 2 bottom teeth finally making their appearance! she also fell in love with a baby doll at Walmart and when she covered it kisses we realized that she knows what kisses are...she really is one of the sweetest babies! #ayearwithjoveygwyn

I spent the day showing my older girl how to use power tools...it's so important to me that they feel confident in all kinds of skills. I've been thinking so much recently about how women are treated in most Christian circles...why is it that the general assumption is that women who are pregnant are having boys? a first born son is celebrated but when you find out it's a girl, it's almost a consolation prize...I'm a pretty "get it done" kind of girl and in my experience, that's usually been discouraged. I've been "rebuked& #34; for speaking up an opposing opinion to male leaders, I've been told to "let the men decide" and been looked over in ministry more times than I can count, simply because I am a woman. I'm so thankful to have a husband who also recognizes this, who supports my strengths, who's not afraid of me speaking up and is helping me raise strong, smart and beautiful girls who will not only be celebrated for their child rearing, cooking abilities and beauty but also for their bravery, wisdom and willingness to do all that God calls them to, even if it makes other people uncomfortable.

things are getting real around here! Years ago we bought big plastic tubs for one of our past moves and they've been a life saver, I highly recommend them instead of cardboard boxes. In order to fit everything in 300ish sq feet we've had to seriously reduce the amount of stuff that we have, we've decided to put the furniture we absolutely love into a small storage unit because we aren't sure if the skoolie life will be permanent and didn't want to make that choice until we've tried it for at least a year. I'll be posting more about our minimizing strategies soon!

so here it is! our big announcement and our new adventure! a few months ago I saw a video on Facebook of a couple living in a converted bus and traveling the country and I immediately got excited. Gabriel and I had been praying and asking the Lord what was next for us, knowing that moving was on both of our hearts. Lots of confirmation and absolute miracles later we bought a bus and decided to convert it into a tiny home on wheels and travel the country! there are lots more exciting details to come but for now, here is our bus in its "before& #34; state!

The episode before last of 'This is Us' punched me right in the gut...Randall's final speech when quitting his job hit on so many of my feelings that I have but haven't found the words to explain, for me it represents my life and learning to follow Christ and not the opinion of man, it's crazy how a tv show can speak so deeply! •
"You see, for days, I've been plagued by the question: how do I honor my [heavenly] father's legacy? Then I realized, I honor his legacy by taking what I learned from the way he lived his life and use it to shape the way I go on living mine. So here it is, Tyler. I quit.
No hard feelings, man. I walk out of here in triumph. I came, I saw, I conquered.
What are you gonna do?
I don't know. Maybe instead of running in the morning, I'll go for a walk. Slow it down a little. Talk to the mailman. That seems like a good way to start the day."

we had a family meeting recently about our life and our family values...we've spent some serious time figuring out where we are, how we got there and what our future holds. we prayed, dreamt together and talked about pros and cons...lots of exciting things are ahead for the mayes team!

oh little one we love your pout...you're turning out to be a little more serious, usually staring at strangers who try to make you smile. it's always interesting to watch people's response when they don't get the usual "smiley baby" response, I refuse to apologize for it...you take a while to warm up to people just like your mama and that's ok, we love who you are and don't want you to be any different. #37weeks #ayearwithjoveygwyn

A pinch of grief always gets me every time I see the obvious gap in our little stair step of ages...we're missing one almost two year old little boy who should be poking his sister in her eye or wriggling around and not cooperating. In my miscarriage journey so far I have discovered that time doesn't heal all wounds...the pain is the same, just different. My other kiddos have helped me with my perspective along this journey, in all my conversations with the children about losing our little one they talk about the excitement of seeing him soon, they speak about what he would look like or how old he would be, reminding everyone we meet that there are 5 kids in our family. They never question why we lost our baby or where God was in all of this, they just accept what is and focus on the positive. I struggle to not focus on loss and how much I'm missing his presence in my life. I need to learn how to have more faith like a child, to focus on the joy that is here now and will be here one day when we meet again.
I've been so inspired by the #mourningintojoystories started by @sharonmckeeman that I wanted to share my own. You can read more about my miscarriage journey at #englexasmiscarriagejourney #mourningintojoy

this whole taking a picture each week thing was a great idea...until she started to crawl and wants nothing to do with her bunny sitting next to her! Ha! //this week 2 people told me you looked like a baby Elizabeth Taylor...you pulled up and sat back down completely independently, your favorite word is "hiiiiii& #34; and now you've been trying to wave with it! we call you our little panda bear because of those big brown eyes and we're still waiting on teeth! #ayearwithjoveygwyn #34weeks

watching donuts being made is considered an educational experience right?! so we're eating donuts for breakfast for educational purposes...donuts = smarter people 😉

I managed to get a picture pre-bunny takedown and smiling at big sister!! baby girl you're still the sweetest...saying mama (usually when you're crying about something) and dada (the rest of the time) and pulling up on everything! Exersaucers no longer entertain you because you want to roam free and eat every little piece of paper you find! #ayearwithjoveygwyn #33weeks

p.s just had to pull out the "vintage& #34; Duchess and Lion from when big brother was a baby! 😍@amae.co 😜

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